Jackie Link's Blog

- A blog for no good reason

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Indian Summer

Hercules wanders around in the yard these days, not eating, occasionally soaking in his water dish, getting ready for his long sleep through the winter. I don't know where he goes to bury himself but he has made it through ten winters in this yard and I guess he knows what to do to survive.

My good deed for today was clearing out the leaves on the upside of my cottage so the rainwater will be able to drain away this winter.

It's very difficult to get into that spot next to the house and once I got down into the deep space I thought, Hmmmm, if I fell off my make-shift ladder no one would hear me if I was hurt. I have to haul this ladder between the house and the 6-foot retaining wall, lifting it up behind me once I'm on top of the wall, and across a space that is only inches wide, so if I fell once inside I wouldn't even be able to crawl out.

I climbed back up to the top, hauled the ladder around the narrow space, climbed back down into the front yard, went inside and got my cell phone, clipped it inside my shirt, climbed back up to the top of the wall, hauled the ladder back into the hole, climbed down and continued cleaning up the leaves.

And then I saw the decomposing rat. A really big rat. The base of the tail was as big around as a finger. It had split open and was fairly far gone but still had some odor. I worried about vagrant parasites, just waiting for another warm body. . .mine.

I climbed back up the ladder, hauled it back around to the yard, climbed down, went in the house for clean-up-the-dead-rat supplies.

Once I got that taken care of the rest was easy. No parasites, like mites, have bitten me. When I dropped the steel ladder into the hole it bounced and is now too far back to reach from the front yard. I'll worry about somehow hauling it out next year.

I took this picture by sticking my little camera out the kitchen window. That wall is over my head when I'm down in the trench.

Friday, September 26, 2008


I don't know about you, but I feel like I'm waiting for more than one shoe to drop.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Friday, September 19, 2008


The day started out with a fall nip in the air and crisp shadows so I hauled my camera on my back all the way up to the top of Twin Peaks. I watched a hawk capture something too large to carry off and I kept on pedaling, I didn't want to know what he was ripping to shreds. When I got to the top with all the tourists I used the toilet kiosk for the first time here in the states, the self-cleaning model borrowed from France, and it was much less intimidating than the one in Paris, probably because I could read all the instructions.

The down hill ride from Twin Peaks was great, as usual. I decided to pop in to the de Young museum to see the Chihuly exhibit before it leaves and had no trouble getting a ticket for the next group entry, about 15 minutes away. They encourage taking photos of the exhibit as long as you don't use a flash, and even have a flickr group to show your pix on. I just took snapshots. Sort of too much of a good thing.

The balls in the photo above are quite large. I can't even imagine how they're made, even after seeing a show on PBS about Chihuly and his work - well, I just saw a few minutes of the show. He has a lot of helpers.

Way too much of a good thing, all in all. Gorgeous, sumptuous and quite a sight and I'm glad I got to see it.

I stopped on Haight for a taco and by the time I left the sky had started to cloud over. I wonder if it will rain on the ride tomorrow.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Back to life as we know it

Sibyl chews wood, any wood, so it behooves me to supply wood O.K. to chew. I got a box of Tinker Toys in a thrift store for her.

We took a long shower together today and she soaked herself to the skin. Wet birds are so pathetic, they lose all their color and smell like an old wet pillow.

And then I went to a shopping mall movie house to see the Coen brother's new film, which wasn't good, but was mindlessly entertaining.

The all-consuming B&W project is really finally done. I got to be part of a new business being formed and that was exciting. The project grew in sudden jumps, twice, taxed my creative juices to meet the expectations and taught me what it means to be professional. Not that easy.

Tomorrow it's back to classes at the Fromm. I will ride my old touring bike up the hill to U.S.F., sit back and learn good things, three mornings a week.

And I hope to take the camera out some more, but first I need to let the dust settle for a bit. It's been intense.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


(there is a cobweb in this photo. really.)

There is a cobweb around the entire ceiling in this room. Whatever made it didn't do well, though, because there is only one insect corpse evident, right in the middle.

Once a year, well, maybe once every two or three or ten years, I go around with a long extension on my vacuum cleaner and take out all the cobwebs.

Maybe I'll do that this week.

Or not.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Pedaling some more

Saturday, I drove to the peninsula to lead the Mellow Velo ride, always a real treat, and on Sunday, the ride around Strawberry and Tiburon, also with the Velo Girls.

After a sleepless Saturday night I knew the work I'd turned in to the print lab on Friday was not what I wanted to finish this project with, and so I took the big camera and long lens along on the north bay ride.

Our heat wave finally broke and the fog bank obscured what I'd hoped to shoot: the panorama of the city skyline as you come into the city from the north. I had old work, but it always has that bridge as its focus, and there is enough of that bridge in the collection already; this Lone Sailor, which I really like, was already used, up close, overlooking the bridge.

Anyway, I got a new, I hope better print order to the lab when it opened this morning, before they'd started on Friday's order, which I canceled. It's in their hands now.

That left me with a free day and so I rode back down to the Embarcadero Cinema to see "Man on Wire." Whoa. That's the sort of movie that definitely keeps you on the edge of your seat. Awesome.

Now I'm going to watch digital t.v. with my new converter box. This third try, a Zenith, gets all the channels, except Ch. 2, which I never watch. Too bad there's nothing to watch on any of them. I may be reduced to reading my book!

Friday, September 05, 2008

"Does the Mayor know?"

I drove out to Ocean Beach after a very quick, maybe twenty minute survey of "Women Impressionists" (way too much pastel) at the Legion of Honor, knowing it was probably going to be too hazy for a good panoramic shot of the coast, and this is what I ran into.

In fact, these two-dimensional life-size cutouts were in a giant semi-circle, of which this is a small part. I walked up to a tent to find out what it was all about when I overheard someone ask, "Does the Mayor know about this?" I decided I probably didn't need to know any more.

Yesterday, surprise globes; today, surprise Indians. My, my.

Later: Here's the story on sfgate.com

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Holy Gigabyte, Batman!

I packed the Brompton into the car, drove to where I could legally park near City Hall, pedaled a few blocks to get there and then tried to capture it from the Victory Garden in the morning light. Not sure how that will convert for black & white, but will work on it later.

From there I drove over to try again to get an iconic facade in the Presidio for the b&w project, but saw a row of spheres along the beach and made a detour into Crissy Field. What a sight! A bonanza of eco-globes, aka Balls. I processed just the one above for now. I have more pixels to process than I have time for, but I had a great day, first walking and then pedaling along the cool beach.

Back to work.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Back at it

I got word late today that they want more of my b&w photos in the offices down town, so it's back to work.

I'll get out early tomorrow while the sun is low in the east, do some more on the waterfront and maybe in the financial district. I'll come home to eat and do my laundry midday, and then get back out when the sun moves lower in the west.

I went out this evening with Judy's long lens but didn't get much of interest.

I was hoping for clear skies while the fog is out at sea, but it was hazy and dull. Too bad.

I just rescued a moth where it was trapped. But it won't do well in the house, so it wasn't really rescued. And that's too bad.

I just noticed every paragraph begins with "I." I think it was a 7th grade teacher who said we shouldn't use the I-word all the time. Another too bad.

Monday, September 01, 2008

In between

Not sure what the next project will be, or even if there needs to be another project. I mean, it's probably O.K. to just be. But it feels kind of boring and passive and unfocused.

Friday was the end of that project and so I cleaned my basement on Saturday as a way of ignoring feeling so let down. I rearranged the Fit's seats to haul the junk to the Salvation Army on old Army Street, but when I got there they waved me away from the big truck bay where I usually drop stuff off, said they were closed. I had old blankets and the Community Thrift Store won't take linens, which is why I was favoring the S.A. Now I have to find another drop off place.

Sunday, I joined Sunday Streets, riding my usual waterfront route with lots of company. I stopped to watch people play along the way.

Went out on the pier opposite Pier 39 and watched the action. Three weeks ago there were almost no sea lions there, now there's not an inch left unoccupied. Had an In-N-Out burger at Fisherman's Wharf and listened to the Slow Food Rocks concert at the Great Meadow in Ft. Mason before browsing the books in the Book Bay. Bought three books.

Monday was a BBQ with the neighbors. Today a trip to the Goodwill drop-off place on 3rd Street and after lunch a ride downtown for a haircut in Jackson Square. As a treat to myself I think I will see "Man on Wire" at the Embarcadero Cinema afterwards.

Tra la, tra la.